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As children progress through Junior School, the emphasis is placed on the further acquisition of skills and understanding in all curriculum areas.
Our creative and integrated curriculum is underpinned by a structured approach to teaching the core subjects of English, Mathematics, Science and ICT and a commitment to high standards. Cross-curricular links are made, where appropriate, to make the learning meaningful and relevant.
We hold true to the overarching principles of the English National Curriculum which provides a framework for our key teaching and learning intentions, we firmly believe that equipping our young 21st-century learners with the relevant skills and knowledge.
Arabic is one of the oldest existing and most widely spoken languages in the world and is ranked among the top six of the world's major languages.
At St Christopher’s School, we are proud of our Arabic language programme for both native and non-native speakers as it gives all pupils an opportunity to communicate in our host nation’s language.
We follow the Bahraini Government Curriculum with a curriculum that focuses on reading, writing, speaking and listening. The curriculum is enhanced through units of work linked to learning about Bahrain and Arabic Heritage and Culture.
We celebrate Arabic language and culture on many different occasions such as the Bahrain National Day, Eid al Adha and an Arabic Reading and Writing Week which helps develop the skills needed to communicate effectively and give pupils a chance to enjoy learning and broaden their language.
The cornerstone of the education for pupils at St Christopher's School is the formation of their Islamic faith. The focus of the Islamic Studies curriculum is to familiarise the pupils with Islamic beliefs and practices and to enhance their understanding of the practical dimension of their faith. The approach we use is designed to instil a love for Allah SWT and an appreciation of the Prophetic example.
At St Christopher’s we use the Bahrain Ministry of Education curriculum of Islamic Studies for Arabs. For non-Arab students, the school uses the Islamic Good Word course which is specifically designed for non-Arab Muslim pupils. As students progress from one grade level to the other, they learn how to practice the basic rituals of worship, Ibadat, and the Articles of Faith. They learn important parts of the life of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) and recognise his significance to Muslims and the world. They learn about the lives of other prophets and analyse their stories for important lessons.
Our Art curriculum in Years 1 to 6 follows the Art Programmes of Study in the National Curriculum for England 2014. This ensures that all pupils have ample opportunities to produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences in a variety of media. Pupils become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques.
The curriculum is enhanced by exploring the work of famous artists, Arabic art and through opportunities to visit local artists at work. All pupils contribute to collaborative pieces of artwork which are now displayed throughout the school.
Design and Technology (DT) at St Christopher’s is an inspiring practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, pupils design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. They acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art. Pupils learn how to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable.
DT is taught by the pupil’s class teacher in Nursery to Year 3. DT in Years 4, 5 and 6 is taught by a specialist DT teacher in our purpose-built DT classroom or Food Technology kitchen for 1 hour each week. In Year 6 children get to compete in the Master Chef competition where they work in small groups planning and making their own 2-course meal. Our specialist DT classroom is resourced with state of the art equipment, such as a 3d printers, vacuum former, belt sander, pillar drill as well as standard resistant materials tools and sewing machines for textile projects.
Our DT curriculum in Nursery and Reception follows the Expressive Arts and Design guidance in the Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. This involves children being able to safely explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques. In Years 1 to 6 follows the DT Programmes of Study in the National Curriculum for England 2014. This ensures that all pupils have ample opportunities to design, make and evaluate projects.
Drama is an integral part of students’ life at St Christopher’s School. We cherish the enthusiasm and commitment of our students and teachers display in every aspect of their involvement in Drama, throughout the school. From the amazing Year group Cantatas which celebrate the wonderful learning; the exciting theatre trips to the Bahrain Cultural Hall and the visiting theatre companies that perform educational shows.
At St Christopher’s, the Year 5 and 6 children produce a spectacular show at the end of the academic year. A true celebration of team-work; one where actors, singers and dancers get to display their talents.
English at primary school level is the ability to read, write, speak and listen in a way that lets us communicate effectively and make sense of the world. If children lack vital literacy skills they can be held back at every stage of their life. At St Chris, we aim to equip our pupils with the best English skills, attitudes and habits, in order for them to reach their future goals.
We do this through the teaching of a number of different ‘strands’
Excellent reading skills underpin everything we do at school. Being able to read well not only enables pupils to discover new facts and to learn but also opens them up to a world of new ideas, stories and opportunities. As they experience high-quality discussion with the teacher, as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and non-fiction, they build a love of reading which will stay with them throughout their lives.
Learning to write is one of the most important things that a child at primary school will do. Pupils are immersed in a rich environment and are taught via exciting, thought-provoking topics. They use their writing in almost all other subjects of the curriculum and are aware that good writing will give them a voice to share their ideas with the world.
Developing the skills needed to communicate effectively is essential for success in life, and pupils develop them during their time at St Chris in a variety of ways. These include show and tell sessions, reading their own work out to the class, reciting poetry and presenting project work. Older pupils will also harness the power of research and critical thinking in order to participate in debating sessions.
Evidence suggests that learning a foreign language can improve listening and writing skills, boost creativity and sharpen the mind. It can broaden horizons and open doors to all sorts of opportunities, providing an opening to other cultures. At St Christopher’s we believe that a high-quality language education fosters pupils’ curiosity and deepens their understanding of the world.
We also think that studying a second language supports children’s general literacy and oracy, by raising awareness of their own language and thereby enriching their understanding of both. Our teaching enables pupils to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. French is introduced in Year 4 and taught by a native French-speaking specialist teacher for 1 hour each week.
If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart. - Nelson Mandela
The French curriculum is based on the British National curriculum programme of study for MFL and target also to encourage pupils to sit the Delf exams. Children in Year 5 and Year 6 are given the opportunity to extend their language skills through Delf Prim exams which are a series of certificates awarded by the French Ministry of Education for proficiency in French as a foreign language.
The emphasis is on communication in a fun and stimulating learning environment. French lessons include songs, games, role-play, learning about French culture, writing projects, and activities online. The French curriculum is enhanced through activities such as French Assemblies.
Taught by their class teacher, humanities units are taught in 1 hour weekly lessons in KS1, and 90 minutes lessons in KS2. Geography and History units of work rotate throughout the year. Trips around the island also enhance the curriculum.
Pupils in Geography learn about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.
Our Geography curriculum in Nursery and Reception follows the Understanding the World guidance in the Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. This involves children being able to make sense of their community through opportunities to find out about people, places and the environment.
In KS1 and KS2 follows the Geography Programmes of Study in the English National Curriculum. This ensures that all pupils have knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.
All year groups at St Christopher’s undertake a unit of work based around a local study in Bahrain. Pupils extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom, Bahrain, Europe, North and South America. This includes the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s most significant human and physical features.
Geography has close links with whole school Global Citizenship projects and aims to empower pupils to lead their own activities and to give them the necessary skills, ability and confidence to be pro-active in making a positive difference in the world.
During historical units of study, pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world, including Bahrain. History is taught by the pupil’s class teacher.
Our History curriculum in Nursery and Reception follows the Understanding the World guidance in the Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. This involves children being able to talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. Our youngest historians develop an early understanding of chronology.
In KS1 and KS2 follows the History Programmes of Study in the English National Curriculum. History helps pupils to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.
All year groups in Years 1 – 6 have a themed day which reinforces historical concepts learned, bringing them to life. For Year 1 pupils this is a realistic enactment of life for a Victorian schoolboy or girl, for Year 3s a Roman battle and for Year 5s a Tudor banquet.
Our Junior School students receive high-quality computing education, preparing them to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. Each year group follows a bespoke ICT curriculum based on the UK National Curriculum for Computer Science. We actively encourage our pupils to become responsible, independent IT users and endeavour to ensure our wider curriculum incorporates elements of computer technology.
The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Computing also ensures that pupils become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
ICT is taught by the pupil’s class teacher in Nursery to Year 3 and a specialist ICT teacher takes classes from Y4-Y6 . We are an extremely well-resourced school in which each class has an interactive capability through an interactive Whiteboard. In addition to this, we have three IT laboratories containing 26 PCs each and sets of laptops and Chromebooks which are available for booking The use of mobile technology is high on our agenda and all students from Y2- Y6 are required to bring their own iPad to school. Our teachers are all skilled users of IT and are always keen to learn more.
We believe strongly in the development of Information Technology (IT) as a means of preparing our pupils for a rapidly changing world in which technology plays a central part.
At St Christopher’s we strive to create a love of maths through a variety of teaching and learning strategies and approaches. We nurture mathematical independence, allowing time for thinking and encouraging discussion using reasoning and problem-solving skills. Children are willful participants in their learning, with innovative and imaginative resources, including practical activities and the outdoor environment.
Playing fun games and singing catchy tunes are all part and parcel of maths lessons at St Christopher’s.
Students welcome the opportunity to explore the fascinating world of maths - discovering patterns, justifying their thinking, proving what works and doesn’t and relating ideas to real life.
We promote the mastery of maths through a series of key questions:
We also recognise the importance of formal mathematical understanding through written calculation methods establishing a clear progression of recording techniques. Yet, we are open to new methods and are constantly researching ideas to develop our practice so children can deepen their learning and understanding.
Think you know your times tables facts? Then take on our leading TTRockstars who need under half a second to rattle off an answer. This forms one part of our mental maths strategy to help children be mentally agile and enthused about number facts.
The Music Curriculum inspires our students to develop a love of music and their talent as musicians. Pupils participate in a range of musical activities, which include singing, composing, listening and performing. Musicianship skills are taught through songs and games and are central to our music programme.
Throughout EYFs and KS1 and KS2 our pupils explore playing instruments ranging from classroom:
There are opportunities for pupils to join music taster clubs, choirs and orchestras and take part in our music performances which are legendary. As well as this parents can also choose to pay for one-to-one tuition in an instrument of their child’s choice.
The Physical Education curriculum provides opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness. There are many PE opportunities at St Christopher’s that build character and help to embed values such as fairness and respect. The PE curriculum is tailored to improve psychological health, for helping to nurture social and moral development – as well as supporting cognitive and academic performance.
We are a sport for all department and as such any pupil that trials for one of the core sports will be able to access that club for free for the whole year. There will also be the opportunity to attend many sporting competitions both at home and abroad.
The pupil’s class teacher in Nursery and a team of specialist PE teachers and Swim Coaches in Years 1 to 6 teach PE Lessons. PE is taught for two 30 minute sessions in Reception, and 1 hour a week in Years 1 and 2. Years 3 to 6 have 2 hours of PE each week. Reception to Year 2 curriculum swimming lessons last for 30 minutes and take place every week throughout the school year.
At St Christopher’s School all pupils have access to superb facilities that include two sports halls, a 25m indoor swimming pool with an attached training pool, a full-size 4G turf football and hockey pitch, two netball courts, four basketball courts and three multi-purpose sports rooms.
All children of the Muslim faith attend weekly Islam lessons and Islamic assemblies arranged by the Arabic department. All other children (Year 1 to Year 6) take multi-faith RE lessons which aim to introduce children to the practices of the major religions. It also seeks to encourage children to develop a sense of identity and to treat others with respect.
The multi-faith RE lessons aim to create an understanding of religious concepts at a level appropriate to the age of the pupil being taught, looking at the key areas of beliefs and values, worship and symbols, festivals and celebrations, world religion, origins and founders, sacred texts, mystery and meaning, and people of faith.
At St Christopher’s, we do not seek to impose religious beliefs on children, nor compromise the integrity of their own beliefs by promoting one religion over another. Our programme is designed to promote understanding and tolerance through a balanced education.
Primary Science at St Christopher’s aims to ensure that all pupils develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through fun and exciting practical investigations. Most of what we know about how the world works were discovered, not by sitting in a chair and thinking hard, but by getting hands-on: pulling things apart, putting them back together, and testing out ideas. Practical science is all about ‘learning by doing’.
St Christopher’s pupils achieve a deeper level of understanding by finding things out for themselves, and by experimenting with techniques and methods that have enabled the secrets of our bodies, our environment, and the whole universe – to be discovered. Science is taught by the pupil’s class teacher in Nursery to Year 6. Science in Nursery and Reception is taught through a cross-curricular topic themed approach. All year groups have the opportunity to use our purpose-built, well-equipped science laboratories.